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Posts in the Event News Category

2

New Look – New Products

Our bold new look.

Our bold new look.

Racing-Icon---Blue-Matte

Our new M-icon floats on a pool of brilliant Mercury Racing blue.

Here we go! Another Miami Boat Show is underway and like always, we have tons of news to share. As we celebrate Mercury’s 75th anniversary we have released our new Mercury Racing logo. The new branding celebrates our rich Racing heritage while promoting our technological leadership in high performance propulsion. All Mercury Racing sterndrive engines on display in the Mercury booth feature the new branding. As usual, we have a number of exciting new products at the show.

540 Sterndrive

Detailed photo of the dual water pickups on the new Bravo One XR Sport gearcase.

A detailed view of the dual water pickups on the Bravo One XR Sport gearcase.

The all new 540 sterndrive.

The all new 540 sterndrive.

Our all-new 8.6L 540 sterndrive replaces the 8.2L 525 EFI.  It outperforms it’s sibling in a variety of fronts. A 21 cubic inch displacement advantage enables the 540 to provide 13 percent more torque for enhanced hole shot and an additional 50 ft-lb of peak torque. It also  delivers superior fuel efficiency and range compared to its 525 sibling. All this power and efficiency comes from 87 posted octane (R+M)/2, or 91 RON (global) pump gas. Digital throttle & shift replace mechanical cables – providing the operator with an intuitive control experience. The 540 complies with both EPA and CARB emissions requirements.

Also being debuted is the new Bravo One XR Sport sterndrive. The new Sport gearcase is two inches shorter than a standard Bravo or Sport Master. The gearcase shape provides enhanced hydrodynamics compared to the standard length Sport Master. Dual water pickups increase water flow for enhanced cooling in a variety of applications. The 540 on display in the Mercury booth features the new drive coupled with an integrated transom sytem (ITS). Cigarette Racing has a pair of 540s in their gorgeous 38 Top Gun VIP edition. Read the rest of this entry »

4

The Glorious Story of Little Red

 Bill Seebold drives the Little Red to victory in Eufaula, Alabama.

Bill Seebold drives Little Red to an APBA outboard speed record in Miami, Florida.

Happy Birthday Mercury Marine!

2014 marks Mercury Marine’s 75th anniversary.

Happy New Year! 2014 is Mercury Marine’s 75th Anniversary. The year will be filled with a variety of exciting events to celebrate our company’s rich history. Mike Butler’s restoration of “Little Red,” a historic Mercury Twistercraft tunnel race boat, is the first in a series of stories I’ll be posting throughout the year in celebration of Mercury’s rich performance heritage.

You will not find a greater authority on Mercury’s outboard racing history than Mike. In fact, Mike is a former outboard tunnel boat racer himself. It was 39 years ago when he  brought his Twister race outboard to Mercury Hi-Performance to repair damage resulting from a racing accident over the weekend. It was on this visit that Mike saw Little Red. He had asked the late Mike Goerlitz, Mercury Hi-Perf Sales Manager at the time, if he could buy it. Mr. Goerlitz turned him down. It was not for sale. Mr. Goerlitz did offer Mike a position with Hi-Perf from which he quickly accepted.

A view from Mike's hangar during the 2013 Experimental Aircraft Association Airventure event. Mike proudly displays the Little Red as it looked prior to the restoration along with Mercury's outboard speed record setting hydro.

Little Red and Mercury’s record setting outboard hydro.

From a distance the boat looked great. Once upon close inspection, Mike knew he had his work cut out for him.

Upon close inspection, Mike knew he had his work cut out for him.

Mike is also an active pilot and long-time member of the Experimental Aircraft Association. He has restored a number of historic bi-planes and his Piper Cub that he flies year round. His passion for Mercury and craftsmanship skills would meld to bring back the glory of a rare gem in the history of outboard powerboat racing. Read the rest of this entry »

5

Got Wheels?

An electronic file of the SEMA brochure.

An electronic file of the SEMA brochure.

The QC4v crate engine shares attributes of its marine cousins.

The QC4v crate engine shares attributes of its marine cousins.

We are excited to unveil our concept QC4v crate engine this week at the 50th annual SEMA show. The A multitude of configurations are possible, fom basic long block form to ready to run engines.  The project has to be one of our best kept secrets ever.

QC4v in the tightly confined engine bay a mid-engine two-seater.

QC4v in the tightly confined engine bay a mid-engine two-seater.

This is our first  SEMA show and there is a lot to see. We brought  an exotic supercar fitted with a turbocharged QC4v 1650 crate engine. The car is complimented with an equally exotic DCB M41-Wide Body catamaran sport boat powered by twin 1350 sterndrives.

The brilliant  QC4v crate engine cutaway.

The brilliant QC4v crate engine cutaway.

An  immaculate cutaway crate engine display shows the brilliantly engineered inner workings of the QC4v engine design. That is flanked by a complete QC4v 1350 and 8.2 Liter 520 sterndrive engine displays. A complete QC4v crate engine is featured in SEMA’s New Products Showcase. Read the rest of this entry »

Aussie Assault!

Wayne Mawer cinches the 2013 Mens Open World Championship.

Wayne Mawer cinches the 2013 Men’s Open World Championship. Photo credit: Bill Lacroix Pictures.

When I posted this on our Facebook page the first comment was, where's the skier?

When I posted this on our Facebook page the first comment was, where’s the skier? Photo Credit: Vanessa Eyles – Cyclonic Images.

Give it up for the Australians and their total domination of the 2013 Water Ski Racing World Championships! The event, held in Tenerife, Spain, concluded Sunday after four rounds of racing. Mercury Racing propulsion was the power in front of all six class world champions. As you can see, conditions were more ideal for an offshore race than ski racing.

To me – running a 21 foot boat with a QC4v 1350 stuffed between the stringers would be a handful. Racing it would another thing all together.

Trudi Stout's 1350 powered boat was hullin the mail! Photo credit: Billy LaCroix Pictures.

Trudi Stout’s 1075 SCi powered boat was haulin’ the mail! Photo credit: Billy Lacroix Pictures.

Women's Open World Champ Trudi Stout.  Photo credit: Billy LaCroix Pictures.

Women’s Open World Champ Trudi Stout. Photo credit: Billy Lacroix Pictures.

But to ski behind that? No thanks. I can’t imagine going as fast as they do on calm water. Ski racing in big water where your tow boat is periodically airborne? Forget about it! That takes some serious skill, stamina and pure guts!

Guy Williamson, our Service Director in Australia sent me an e-mail with the outstanding results. Read the rest of this entry »

LOTO 520!

The 520 sterndrive was a crowd pleaser at its public debut at LOTO.

The 520 sterndrive was a crowd pleaser at its LOTO public debut.

Playcraft Pontoon owner Jim Dorris checks out the 520.

Playcraft Pontoon owner Jim Dorris checks out the 520.

It’s been a busy summer. Last week we introduced our new 520 sterndrive and our our new mobile marketing truck at the Lake of the Ozarks Shootout in Missouri.  It was developed to provide recreational boaters a low-cost option for gaining access to Mercury Racing’s exclusive group of high-performance sterndrive propulsion systems. By the response we’ve received thus far, the engine package is destined to be the power behind a variety of recreational boating applications including runabouts, sport boats and cruisers. Did I mention pontoons?

Larger displacement results in enhanced power and torque.

Larger displacement results in enhanced power and torque.

Based on the 8.2L cylinder block – the 520′s cylinder bores are punched out to 4.560″ for a total of 8.6L of displacement.  The larger displacement, combined with Mercury Racing cylinder heads, multiport fuel injection and an electronic throttle body results with more torque than the 525 EFI and nearly 100 additional horsepower over MerCruiser’s 430 h.p. 8.2L MAG HO. All from 87 posted octane (R+M)/2 or (91 RON) (global) pump gas!

A user friendly maintance decal with interacitve QR code sits atop the coolant resevoir.

A user friendly maintenance decal with interactive QR code sits atop the coolant reservoir.

The 520 is available with a variety of Bravo drive options.

The 520 is available with a variety of Bravo drive options.

Two-Year Warranty

The 520 is our first sterndrive to be backed by a two year limited factory warranty. Robust valve train components including a hardened camshaft are used for enhanced durability. Performance cam profiles, combined with larger valves, pack more air through the engine for greater power and torque. Greater displacement, combined with enhanced airflow, results in unprecedented mid-range punch and consistent pull through the engine rpm operating range. Read the rest of this entry »

Huron Heroes

Marc Granet exclaims victory in Port Huron.

Marc Granet exclaims victory in Port Huron. Photo credit: Marc Granet.

OPA bracket racing is all about accleration out of the turns! Photo credit: Chris Kosin.

OPA bracket racing is all about acceleration out of the turns! Photo credit: Chris Kosin.

“M for Mercury! M for Miss GEICO! M for Magnificent!” Those were the first words from Gary Goodell upon my congratulatory call to him Monday morning regarding Miss GEICO’s convincing win last weekend in Port Huron. OPA’s bracket race rule, with a speed cap of 135 mph, puts a spotlight on driving skill and acceleration. Miss GEICO’s  QC4v 1650′s are unparaled when it comes to acceleration. Time in and out of the turns were the deciding factor in this bracket race.

Bracket racing accentuates the 1650's rapid acceleration. Photo credit: Naplesimage.

Bracket racing accentuates the 1650′s massive torque and acceleration.

Team GEICO. Front row. Mike Griffiths (L) Johnny Bauer (R). Second row (L-R). Marc Granet, ??, ??, Louis Stray, Scotty Begovich, ??, Gart Stray, ??, ??. Missing. Gary goodell, Scott Coltan.

Team GEICO. Front row (L-R): Mike Griffiths and Johnny “Boost” Bauer. Second row (L-R): Marc Granet, Patrick Cleavland, Bruce Tobison, Mary Manke, Scotty Begovich, Dave DiPatrilo, Gary Stray, Craig Wilson, Macah Paul. Photo Credit: Louise Stray.

“The 1650s ran flawlessly. They respond and pull like no other. They are a blast to drive,” said Miss GEICO driver Marc Granet. “We enjoyed having  Mike Griffiths (Mercury Racing Product Integration Manager) and (Mercury Racing Engineering Tech) Johnny Bauer with us for the weekend,”

Marc said. “It was an insightful weekend. We learned alot. The team is continuing to gel.  The 1650s continue to impress us  – and our competitors,” Marc exclaimed. Marc said there was one moment when they were concerned about the engines. “We we slowing down upon completing the race and I started to hear an odd rumble sound. Scotty [Begovich] heard it too. It was a few seconds later before we realized it was the roar of hundreds of fans along the Sarnia, Ontario side of the St. Clair river. The response was overwhelming!,” said Marc. Read the rest of this entry »

4

Thunder in Paradise!

Boat-Dock

Boyne City Marina was transformed to Thunder Boat Row June 12-13!

A lull in activity at the Mercury truck later in the evening on Friday..

A lull in activity at the Mercury truck Friday evening.

Kevin Skiba and I just returned from the 10th annual Boyne Thunder poker run. It is rare to come off of any travel feeling refreshed. But this event was refreshing – in many ways. As I had mentioned in my previous post, Boyne City is very close to my home town of Sault Ste. Marie. Driving across Michigan’s Upper Penninsula and over the mighty Mackinac bridge brought back many memories as we made our trek to paradise. I had forgotten how beautiful the area truly is.

All hands on deck for the drivers meeting Saturday morning.

All hands on deck for the drivers meeting Saturday morning.

OptiMax 250XS and 300XS powered cats were part of the mix.

OptiMax 250XS and 300XS powered cats were part of the mix.

We were impressed by the amount of people roaming about the waterfront upon our arrival Friday afternoon. Tad Whitten said our display truck was busy from the moment he arrived. Main street was jammed with people checking out the classic cars and performance boats.  It was great to see the community support an event in such a grand way. The incredible weather didn’t hurt either. Read the rest of this entry »

1

Boyne Thunder

Photos: Naplesimage

Boyne Thunder is on par with Desert Storm when it comes to street parties.

Boyne Thunder is on par with Desert Storm when it comes to street parties.

The 140 mile run across the waters of Lake Charlevoix and Lake Michigan includes stops in North Port,...

The 140 mile run across the waters of Lake Charlevoix and Lake Michigan includes card stops in Northport, Elk Rapids, Harbor Springs, Bay Harbor and a lunch stop in Charlevoix.

National Sales Manager Kevin Skiba and I are traveling to Michigan later this week to attend the 10th Annual Boyne Thunder Poker Run. Tad Whitten will meet us there with the Marketing display truck.

Having grown up in Sault Ste. Marie, a few hours North of Boyne City, I have fond memories of our family ski trips to Boyne Mountain. I’m looking forward to heading back to my old stomping grounds to witness this popular run. I spoke to event promoter Mike Knoblock recently. He said the event has a maximum capacity for 85 boats, and they’ve reached that limit. He is ecstatic with the growth they have experienced over the past nine years.

Mercury Racing will be the thrust behind the majority of 85 boats registered for Boyne Thunder - 2013.

Mercury Racing will be the thrust behind the majority of 85 boats registered for Boyne Thunder – 2013.

The docks at the Boyne City Marina will again be jammed with go fast performance boats.

The docks at the Boyne City Marina will again be jammed with go fast performance boats.

Event organizer and Main Street director Hugh Conklin said, “What has made Boyne Thunder special is its relationship with Camp Quality, a nonprofit organization that provides special experiences and support for children with cancer. Since it began, Boyne Thunder has raised more than $220,000 for Camp Quality, and it has become an important part of the camp’s success.”

A new Boyne Thunder partner this year is Challenge Mountain, a local nonprofit organization dedicated to enriching and improving lives for the mentally and physically challenged through outdoor recreation. All donated dollars to Challenge Mountain go directly to support winter and summer programs including skiing, biking, canoeing, kayaking and sailing. Mercury Racing is honored to be associated with events such as this, whose main goal is to give back to the community and enrich the lives of those in need.

Twin Mercury Racing 1100s make this beauty skate!

Twin Mercury Racing 1100s make this beauty skate!

Michigan based Sunsation will be well represented at Boyne Thunder.

Michigan based Sunsation will be well represented at Boyne Thunder.

Boyne Thunder kicks off Friday evening with a street party. The poker runs starts 9:30 a.m. Saturday. The 140 mile run over the waters of Lake Charlevoix and Lake Michigan includes card stops in Northport, Elk Rapids, Harbor Springs, Bay Harbor, and a lunch stop in downtown Charlevoix.

Quite a few of our industry friends are attending. Jay Nichols, who provided the wonderful 2012 Boyne Thunder pics featured here, is coming after much pleading and prodding from me and buddy Ron Szolack. Matt Trulio will be on hand to provide Speed on the Water readers his first had account of event highlights. Nor-Tech sales rep Terry Sobo will be making a return trip as will Michigan natives Wayne and Joe Schaldenbrand. They are bringing a fleet of Sunsation boats. Michigan is also home to Douglas Marine. There will be plenty of Skaters to wow spectators, I’m sure. We hope to catch up with Peter Hledin while we’re there.

We look forward to seeing old friends and making new friends in our neighboring state.

 

 

In with the Outlaws!

Artwork for the official Mercury Racing event T-shirt.

Everything’s Big in Texas – including the artwork on the official Mercury Racing event T-shirts.

Endeaver Marina on Clear Lake transform into the poker run village for the weekend.

Endeaver Marina on Clear Lake transforms into the poker run village for the weekend. Photo courtesy Paul Robinson.

We’re getting stoked to head south tomorrow for the 6th Annual Texas Outlaw Challenge poker run. We’re excited to check out this unique venue. Traveling with me is our National Sales Manager Kevin Skiba and prop guru Scott Reichow.  Tad Whitten is delivering our poker run village displays featuring our 1650 RACE and 565 sterndrives, an OptiMax 300XS outboard, Mercury Racing Propellers and Accessories. If you’re attending, stop by and check out our horsepower stable:) Be sure to pick up an assortment of Mercury Racing Sportswear, including the official Everything’s Big in Texas event T-shirts. Boat attendance last year was 127. They are anticipating 200 boats this year!

Event promoter Paul Robinson is excited to have our support. “Mercury Racing has been an original Outlaw Sponsor since our first event 6 years ago, Paul said. “This year they are on-site in a centerpiece display featuring their new 1650 HP engine that debuted at the Miami Boat Show. We are proud to have it make its Texas debut at our event,” said Paul.

Run to Kenny’s

The docks at Endeaver Marina host some of the baddest, fastest boats on the planet during Challenge weekend.

The docks at Endeaver Marina host some of the baddest, fastest boats on the planet during Challenge weekend. Photo courtesy Paul Robnison.

Mercury Racing and MTI customer Kenny Armstrong hosts poker runners at his residence on Clear Lake.

Mercury Racing and MTI customer Kenny Armstrong hosts poker runners at his residence on Clear Lake. Photo courtesy Paul Robinson.

Johnny O’Loughlin, driving his 1350 powered 48′ MTI, was crowned King of the Hudson after his 167 mph run last weekend in New York City.  Any bets on who will be the fastest in Texas? We’ll have a good idea when the 100+ MPH Club Extreme Shootout is completed Friday morning. The first leg of the Gunslinger Poker Run & GPS Shootout takes place Friday afternoon. Apparently, the one and only stop on this short run is MTI and Mercury Racing customer Kenny Armstrong’s residence.

The main event takes place Saturday when boaters will have a choice of 11 card stops throughout Galveston Bay and Clear Lake.

MTI will debut Mario William's new 446 cat sporting 1350 power! Photo credit. Speed on the Water.

MTI will debut Mario William’s new 446 cat sporting 1350 power! Photo credit. Speed on the Water.

Dave Hemmingson's new M41 Wide Body looks fast sitting still!

Dave Hemmingson’s new M41 Wide Body looks fast sitting still!

Club QC4v

Some of the Mercury powered boats registered for the event include:

  • Kenny Armstrong’s 1350 powered 48′ MTI Phantom
  • The beautiful 52′ MTI Black Diamond
  • Mario Williams’ new 1350 powered 446  MTI, Big Bad Wolf.
  • Dave’s Custom Boats will showcase a number of exotic catamarans, including their 1350 powered 41 Wide Body.

Can’t wait to get in with the outlaws! Check out the event photo album on our Facebook page.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1

Rinker Wins Maple City Grand Prix

Photos: Paul Kemiel Photographics

LaPorte action-867

Terry Rinker was again dialed-in and the one to beat.

Maple City Grand Prix race organizers (L-R): Jason Miller,  Blair Milo, Mayor of LaPorte, Jack Arnette, President of LaPorte County Convention & Visitors Bureau.

Maple City Grand Prix race organizers (L-R): Jason Miller, Blair Milo, Mayor of LaPorte, Jack Arnette, President of LaPorte County Convention & Visitors Bureau.

Defending 2012 F1 High Points Champion Terry Rinker won the inaugural Maple City Grand Prix Sunday, June 2, in LaPorte, Indiana. The race was round two of the 2013 US Formula 1 Powerboat Tour.

“It was great to win a race in my home state,” said Terry Rinker. “I had family, friends and even former classmates cheering me on,” Terry said. Contributing Mercury Racing photographer Paul Kemiel, who lives in Michigan City, Indiana, was instrumental in bringing the excitement of outboard tunnel boat racing to LaPorte. “I’ve been involved with promoting the SBI Great Lakes Grand Prix since its inception,” said Paul. “Jason Miller, Sports Development Manager for the LaPorte County Convention & Visitors Bureau, asked for my input regarding other types of powerboat racing they could bring to the area. I told them Stone Lake was a natural for F1 tunnel boats,” Paul said.

LaPorte action-548

Laporte was Tammy Wolf’s first F1 race. She went to the event to get more seat time in her new OptiMax 200XS SST powered F2 boat.

LaPorte portraits-50

Drivers resorted to signing Mercury Racing decals after running out of autograph cards.

US Formula 1 Powerboat Tour President Jose Mendana worked with race organizer Jason Miller to put on the event. “The community was very excited.  The amount of people who showed up for the boat parade and street party was incredible,” said Jose.

“LaPorte was phenomenal. Crowds of people were constantly by the boats asking for autographs,” said Tammy Wolf.  “It was the most phenomenal North American race I’ve been to in some time,” Tammy said.

Tammy went to LaPorte to continue testing of her new Mercury OptiMax 200 XS SST race outboard powered F2 ride. She knew she wouldn’t be competitive with the higher horsepower F1 boats. “I thought I was fast until the first F1 boat blew past me! I still have my training wheels on, I’m giving the boys headaches,” said Tammy. “I don’t think they are used to girl drivers. I thought I would be one of the guys…they don’t seem to quite know what to do with me,” Tammy said. “Chris Fairchild took me under his wing and let me pit with him for the weekend,”said Tammy. “Tammy is doing great. She is still learning the differences between SST60 and F2. I thought she adapted well to the right-hand turn in LaPorte,” said Chris. Read the rest of this entry »